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Re: Colonel Sir William De Lancey
Posted by: David Miller Date: May 28, 2001 at 02:04:38
In Reply to: Re: Colonel Sir William De Lancey by Jo of 405

Dear Jo,
Thank you for your reply to my query. The background is that as part of the research for my book "Lady De Lancey at Waterloo" I visited the publishers of the 1906 book "A Week at Waterloo" who had records of the following.
1. The picture "Major William De Lancey in the unitform of the 45th Foot" was copied in 1906 from a collection of a family member/descendant in New York. When researching for my own book I managed to find several De Lanceys in New York directories and even spoke to one of them on the telephone, but I never got any replies to letters. It is, of course, a difficult matter to pursue such a matter from the other side of the Atlantic, and eventually I let the matter drop. WH De Lancey never went to the United States after being brought to England as an infant, and this picture must have been painted beteen 1799 and 1803 in England (the period when WH was a major in the 45th), so I am not clear how the picture reached the United States. I presume that it is still there, but where I have no idea.
2. The second portrait "Sir William Howe De Lancey in the full dress uniform of a colonel on the staff" was provided to the publisher in 1906 buy a Lieutenant-Colonel De Lancey. I tried to trace this chap, but apart from the fact that there was a Lt Col De Lancey in the 93rd Regiment in the late 1800s I got no further. The 93rd was a Scottish regiment, so presumably this Lt Col De Lancey was Scottish-based.

I am not clear why you mention the Earl of Selkirk. The only link I know of is that Lady Magdalene De Lancey (nee Hall) was the daughter of Lady Helen Hall, who was the former Lady Helen Douglas, 2nd daughter of the 4th Earl of Selkirk.Is that what you are referring to, or was there another link? However, I did correspond with the present Earl of Selkirk about Lady Helen Hall and he told me that the family home was burnt down (in the 1940s, I think) and that a vast amount of family records and property was destroyed with it.

As a matter of interest, I managed to find a number of living English De Lanceys and spoke to/corresponded with four of them. All of them are in the West Country, with a particular concentration around Bristol. All could trace their ancestry back to about 1900-1910, but no further back than that. They admitted to some idle curiosity about their unusual family name, but none of them had tried to pursue it any further than that. In my research I traced the English-based De Lanceys down to about 1830, but could get no further. So what was the link between those early 19th Century De Lanceys and the Bristol De Lanceys of 1900?

Finally, there is a clear link between the De Lanceys and the Channel Islands, but again I have not tried to pursue it.

Cheers! David Miller


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